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Just a “very good” powder: turmeric is a big disappointment

Just a “very good” powder
Turmeric is a disappointment

Turmeric is a myth. And a promise of health. The root plant is said to help with cancer, chronic inflammation, and joint pain, among other things. The expectations for the corresponding products are consequently high. Öko-Test is disappointed.

Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric root, is said to have surprising health effects for some time. It doesn’t matter if it is Alzheimer’s, stroke, digestive problems, cancer, chronic inflammation or joint pain, the “magic drug” should be consumed in food or as a drink to relieve symptoms in various adverse situations. Deep yellow powder, also known as turmeric, is one of the main ingredients in curry. According to Statista, 5,696 tons of turmeric were imported into Germany in 2020, up from just under 2,100 tons twelve years earlier. By far the most important supplier country with more than 4200 tons was India.

With so much demand, the question arises what ground turmeric is for. Öko-Test examined 21 products, eleven of which were organic, from supermarkets, discount stores and pharmacies. At prices between 0.47 and 9.98 euros for 50 grams.

Almost all of them pass the pollutant test

All turmeric products have been tested for harmful substances in specialized laboratories. Among other things, the heavy metals lead and chromium and ethylene oxide, which is used as a pesticide or for fumigation. Additionally, samples were tested for contamination with mineral oil components (MOSH / MOAH), for pesticides, mold toxins, and for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The microbiological quality was also checked. The health effects of the goods have not been tested.

The result is disappointing. Only “Dennree ground turmeric, Naturland” (1.99 euros per 50 grams) scored “very good”, two products received “satisfactory” (“organic DM ground turmeric, Naturland”, 1.63 euros and ” Organic ground K-turmeric “from Kaufland, € 1.88). The rest fail with “insufficient” or even “unsatisfactory”.

Mainly due to excessive exposure to mineral oil components from the point of view of the testers. There are also four brands of pesticides and the carcinogenic benzo[a]pyrene – in an organic product of all things (“Sonnentor ground turmeric”, 2.99 euros). Consequently, the result is “insufficient”. “Alnatura ground turmeric”, Aldi Nord / Süd “organic ground turmeric”, “tree of life ground turmeric” and “TRS turmeric powder Haldi turmeric powder” received the same negative note, mainly due to the significantly increased mineral components of the oil.

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